People have relied on consumer reviews since the dawn of time. After all, the cave men had to figure out the best hunting spots from someone, right? Back in the day, it was called Word of Mouth. Now it’s called Social Media. In less sophisticated circles, it’s called gossip. Regardless of the label, consumer reviews can provide a creative way to enhance your conversion rates (as long as they are positive). Internet directories, merchant sites, review sites, Facebook posts, blogs, text messages, and yes, even e-mail are the pathways consumers turn to first when they begin their shopping trip. The Internet is overflowing with reviews because people can’t resist the opportunity to share their warm fuzzies and horror stories. In other words, people love to gossip.
Using consumer reviews to boost conversion rates isn’t a new idea, but rather a recurring trend that is receiving renewed attention thanks to astounding growth in social medial platforms and smartphone use. Three simple tips can help you catapult your conversion rate.
- Use the products and services you promote and then blog about them. Essentially, write your own review. Grab reader attention by pairing your post with a high-quality image.
- Research web sites aimed at your target audience, and then reach out to those sites and offer to write a guest post. For example, let’s say you sell homebrew supplies and you just tested a new bottle capper on your own Chocolate Maple Stout. You genuinely believe that this capper made bottling your brew faster, easier, and more fun. Reach out to homebrew bloggers and offer to guest blog. Craft a meaningful post versus a sales pitch, but be sure to mention that you used this particular capper. And, be sure to link to your own review in the post. Word of caution: Make sure the sites you contact are quality sites. You do have a reputation to protect. (Your goal is no bad gossip, right?) If you can’t drum up a guest spot, hit the online forums in your niche and post your reviews there.
- Flaunt your best reviews on your site or in your shopping cart for visitors to see and read. Caveat: The FTC does have rules on the use of testimonials and endorsements, so make sure you are in compliance.
On a final note, SearchReviews, a consumer review aggregator, compiles customer feedback from across the web into a comprehensive and searchable database. It also promotes itself as a monetization tool for publishers. You can add review summaries from SearchReviews to your own site (or any page, for that matter) by embedding a standard HTML template. This gives visitors to your site an easy way to search for reviews of your product(s) while they are on your page. Additionally, you have the option to submit independent reviews of your product to the database. It might be worth checking out.
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